A low scoring game for the Cardinals in Phoenix Thursday night left the score tied at one until the ninth inning. And Tony La Russa’s tactical call in the ninth was a strategic blow to hopes for a St. Louis win.
Arizona’s Kelly Stinnett snatched the game’s first run and the Diamondback’s first lead of the series in the third inning. The Cards didn’t match that run until Reggie Sanders hit a single run RBI in the eighth.
St. Louis pitcher John Mabry jump started the ninth with a single. A sacrifice bunt and a groundout moved the redbird to third. Then La Russa sent left-handed starter Jason Marquis to the plate against reliever Lance Cromier hoping the change-up would change the score. But Marquis struck out and Cards reliever Ray King stepped up to the mound in the bottom of the ninth with the score still tied at one.
Diamondbacks’ Luis Gonzales didn’t let that change-up phase him. He fired his second home-run off a left-handed pitcher and his 12th for the season, scoring the final run of the game.
The D’backs snatched a 2-1 victory over St. Louis.